New Zealand, KZ-3

New Zealand, KZ-3, photo by: SallyAnne Santos

Built in 19856 according to the International Third Rule- America’s Cup.


1986-1987: Sir Michael Fay put together the three leading New Zealand designers and a $15,000,000 budget to realize the first long-lasting challenge for the America’s Cup. KZ-3 was among the first twelves built of glass fibre composite. Nicknamed “plastic fantastics” these boats had the advantage of significantly stiffer hulls with no flexing especially in the mast region where the shrouds are attached.  Special attention was devoted to the keel design for which exhaustive tests were conducted in wind tunnels. KZ-3 was the first of two trial horses for KZ-7 in view of the challenger trials.

1992-1998: Purchased by the Nippon Yacht Club in Tokyo, Japan she was raced as Nippon Challenge and given a new sail number J-3. In 1998, she was purchased by Michael G. Smith, who brought her to Melbourne, AU, restored her original sail number (KZ-3) and renamed her Kiwi.

2005-2009: Owned by Roger Wright, she was known as Wright on White and was actively raced in the Newport fleet.

2012-present: KZ-3 was purchased by Gunther K. Buerman, her current homeport is Newport RI, where she is actively raced in numerous regional regattas.

Jump to Twelve Metre Yacht Club, Newport Station Fleet page for New Zealand (KZ-3)


Sail Number KZ-3
International Rule THIRD Rule-AC
Year Built 1985
Designer Laurie Davidson, Bruce Farr, Ron Holland
Builder McMullen & Wing
First Owner NZ America's Cup Challenge Trust
First Name New Zealand
First Sail Number K-5
First Country New Zealand
Original Homeport Auckland
Other Names Nippon Challenge (1992) - Kiwi (2000) - Wright on White (2005)
Other Sail Numbers J-3
Current Status / Condition sailing
Current Owner Johan Blach Petersen
Current Location Aarhus, Denmark
Construction Fibreglass composite-glass reinforced plastic
Length Overall 19.99 m.
Length Waterline 14.02 m.
Beam 4.02 m.
Draft 2.74 m.